What Is AP?
The AP Program offers college-level courses and exams that you can take in high school.
With 38 courses in seven subject areas, AP gives you the opportunity to dig deeper into subjects you love—and even earn college credit.
Taking AP courses in high school could give you an advantage in college by letting you:
Your AP score could earn you college credits before you even set foot on campus.
Your AP score can let you skip introductory courses in college.
Earning credit or placement can open up time on your schedule or even let you graduate early.
“AP” on your high school transcript shows colleges you’ve tackled college-level work.
Nearly all colleges and universities in the United States grant credit and placement for qualifying AP scores. Use our tool to find colleges you’re interested in and see what you could earn with AP.
The AP credits I received allowed me to skip straight to higher-level, more demanding courses in my major.— Tyler V., University of Washington
Research consistently shows that AP students are better prepared for college than students who don’t take AP. They’re more likely to enroll and stay in college, do well in their classes, and graduate in four years. Taking AP can help you:
Get familiar with college-level work—and boost your confidence by tackling it.
Time management, critical thinking, scholarly writing—AP courses help you hone the skills you’ll need in college and career.
Studying a subject in depth could give you new insights and even put you on the path to a career.
Learn what AP did for these current and former AP students—and what it could do for you.
In AP, just like in a college class, you learn by doing. Ismael found that out firsthand in AP Biology: “We actually applied all the concepts we learned in the experiments. It’s not just flipping pages.”
Here are the steps on the path to college credit and placement.
See which courses your school offers, choose the course you’re interested in, and talk to your teacher or school counselor about signing up.
First join your class in our online system. Then work hard in the course. You can practice for the exam with our free online resources.
Register for your exam by the fall deadline. Exams are given in May. When you take the exam, you’ll have a chance to choose a college or scholarship program to send your scores to.
Check your scores when they’re released in early July. You can send additional scores—or send scores for the first time if you haven’t sent any yet.
There are AP courses in arts, English, history and social science, math and computer science, sciences, and world languages and cultures. Whatever your academic interest, you’ll find a course to match it.